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Pros: The open-source online editor will help kids wade into the world of animation, game creation, and coding without an expensive software investment.
Cons: Being presented with a blank canvas may intimidate students; some would benefit from pre-created, editable templates as a starting point.
Bottom Line: A great starting place for aspiring creators to design and share engaging content.
Some students will gravitate toward Wick Editor's features almost effortlessly, while others will need some time to get the hang of it. Kids can create animations of all sorts to complement classroom content. In science, ask students to demonstrate molecular movement in different states of matter. For ELA, challenge them to re-create the setting, characters, or action from a short story or novel, and piece together class animations to teach elements of literature. Group tech-savvy kids with those who excel at art or writing, and have them collaborate on a math game or a video about history -- custom code features allow users to write scripts to level up animations.
Whichever direction you decide, definitely allow for some time to get used to the platform's different features. The tutorials, examples, and community forum are helpful at the start, but ample practice, exploration, and peer-to-peer teaching will likely provide quicker and more effective results.
At first, being presented with a blank canvas may seem overwhelming. However, even students who have never used animation software will find it easy to create simple moving pictures. With a little time and inspiration from their peers, these early successes may encourage kids to attempt more complex designs that demonstrate more in-depth learning. Multimedia presentations are a great way to engage students in classroom content and foster the development of higher-order thinking skills, especially when students have to tell a story or explain their thinking.
Teachers may need to teach design skills in the planning stages of student presentations -- without a clear plan, animations may be disjointed and lack focus. Teachers may also need to check in with students regularly to monitor progress. The absence of classroom-specific tools means that kids may give the appearance of working without producing anything relevant or meaningful. And while the community features a small sampling of animations for users to view and play, it would be helpful if there were templates that students could edit so that they wouldn't have to start from scratch.